Krishnendu Krishnan

What do these Colors Mean ??

We live in a colorful world. In many countries, colors represent various holidays; they are also used to express feelings and enliven language. Find your favorite color and see what it means around the world.

Red

* For the ancient Romans, a red flag was a signal for battle.
* Because of its visibility, stop signs, stoplights, brake lights, and fire equipment are all painted red.
* The ancient Egyptians considered themselves a red race and painted their bodies with red dye for emphasis.
* In Russia, red means beautiful.
* The Bolsheviks used a red flag as their symbol when they overthrew the tsar in 1917. That is how red became the color of communism.
* In India, red is the symbol for a soldier.
* In South Africa, red is the color of mourning.
* It's considered good luck to tie a red bow on a new car.
* In China, red is the color of good luck and is used as a holiday and wedding color. Chinese babies are given their names at a red-egg ceremony.
* Superstitious people think red frightens the devil.
* A “red-letter day” is one of special importance and good fortune.
* In Greece, eggs are dyed red for good luck at Easter time.
* To “paint the town red” is to celebrate.
* Red is the color most commonly found in national flags.
* In the English War of the Roses, red was the color of the House of Lancaster, which defeated the House of York, symbolized by the color white.
* The “Redshirts” were the soldiers of the Italian leader Garibaldi, who unified modern Italy in the nineteenth century.
* To “see red” is to be angry.
* A “red herring” is a distraction, something that takes attention away from the real issue.
* A “red eye” is an overnight airplane flight.
* If a business is “in the red,” it is losing money.

Green

* Only one national flag is a solid color: the green flag of Libya.
* Ancient Egyptians colored the floors of their temples green.
* In ancient Greece, green symbolized victory.
* In the highlands of Scotland, people wore green as a mark of honor.
* Green is the national color of Ireland.
* A “greenback” is slang for a U.S. dollar bill.
* Green means “go.” When “all systems are green,” it means everything is in order.
* The green room of a concert hall or theater is where performers relax before going onstage.
* The “green-eyed monster” is jealousy.
* A greenhorn is a newcomer or unsophisticated person.
* Green is youthful.
* Being “green around the gills” is looking pale and sickly.
* “Green with envy” means full of envy or jealousy.
* A person with a “green thumb” is good at making plants grow.
* A green, or common, is a town park.
* Green is a healing color, the color of nature.

Blue


* In ancient Rome, public servants wore blue.
* Today, police and other public servants wear blue.
* In China, blue is for little girls.
* In Iran, blue is the color of mourning.
* Blue was used as protection against witches, who supposedly dislike the color.
* If you are “true blue,” you are loyal and faithful.
* Blue stands for love, which is why a bride carries or wears something blue on her wedding day.
* A room painted blue is said to be relaxing.
* “Feeling blue” is feeling sad. “Blue devils” are feelings of depression.
* Something “out of the blue” is from an unknown source at an unexpected time.
* A bluebook is a list of socially prominent people.
* The first prize gets a blue ribbon.
* A blue blood is a person of noble descent. This is probably from the blue veins of the fair-complexioned aristocrats who first used this term.
* “Into the blue” means into the unknown.
* A “bluenose” is a strict, puritanical person.
* A “bluestocking” used to be a scholarly or highly knowledgeable woman.
* The pharaohs of ancient Egypt wore blue for protection against evil.
* The “blues” is a style of music derived from southern African-American secular songs. It influenced the development of rock, R&B, and country music.
* “Blue laws” are used to enforce moral standards.
* A blue ribbon panel is a group of especially qualified people.

Purple, Violet

* The Egyptian queen Cleopatra loved purple. To obtain one ounce of Tyrian purple dye, she had her servants soak 20,000 Purpura snails for 10 days.
* In Thailand, purple is worn by a widow mourning her husband's death.
* A “purple heart” is a U.S. military decoration for soldiers wounded or killed in battle.
* Purple is a royal color.
* Purple robes are an emblem of authority and rank.
* “Purple speech” is profane talk.
* “Purple prose” is writing that is full of exaggerated literary effects and ornamentation.
* Leonardo da Vinci believed that the power of meditation increases 10 times when done in a purple light, as
in the purple light of stained glass.
* Purple in a child's room is said to help develop the imagination according to color theory.
* Richard Wagner composed his operas in a room with shades of violet, his color of inspiration.

Yellow

* In Egypt and Burma, yellow signifies mourning.
* In Spain, executioners once wore yellow.
* In India, yellow is the symbol for a merchant or farmer.
* In tenth-century France, the doors of traitors and criminals were painted yellow.
* Hindus in India wear yellow to celebrate the festival of spring.
* If someone is said to have a “yellow streak,” that person is considered a coward.
* In Japan during the War of Dynasty in 1357, each warrior wore a yellow chrysanthemum as a pledge of courage.
* A yellow ribbon is a sign of support for soldiers at the front.
* Yellow is a symbol of jealousy and deceit.
* In the Middle Ages, actors portraying the dead in a play wore yellow.
* To holistic healers, yellow is the color of peace.
* Yellow has good visibility and is often used as a color of warning. It is also a symbol for quarantine, an area marked off because of danger.
* “Yellow journalism” refers to irresponsible and alarmist reporting.

White

* A white flag is the universal symbol for truce.
* White means mourning in China and Japan.
* Angels are usually depicted wearing white robes.
* The ancient Greeks wore white to bed to ensure pleasant dreams.
* The Egyptian pharaohs wore white crowns.
* The ancient Persians believed all gods wore white.
* A “white elephant” is a rare, pale elephant considered sacred to the people of India,
* Thailand, Burma, and Sri Lanka; in this country, it is either a possession that costs more than it is worth to keep or an item that the owner doesn't want but can't get rid of.
* It's considered good luck to be married in a white garment.
* White heat is a state of intense enthusiasm, anger, devotion, or passion.
* To whitewash is to gloss over defects or make something seem presentable that isn't.
* A “white knight” is a rescuer.
* A white list contains favored items (as opposed to a blacklist).
* A “whiteout” occurs when there is zero visibility during a blizzard.
* A “white sale” is a sale of sheets, towels, and other bed and bath items.
* A “whited sepulcher” is a person who is evil inside but appears good on the outside, a hypocrite.
* “White lightning” is slang for moonshine, a homebrewed alcohol.
* A white room is a clean room as well as a temperature-controlled, dust-free room for precision instruments.
* White water is the foamy, frothy water in rapids and waterfalls.

Black

* The ancient Egyptians and Romans used black for mourning, as do most Europeans and Americans today.
* The “Blackshirts” were the security troops in Hitler's German army, also known as the S.S.
* Black often stands for secrecy.
* Black humor is morbid or unhealthy and gloomy humor.
* In China, black is for little boys.
* A “blackhearted” person is evil.
* If a business is “in the black,” it is making money.
* A “blacklist” is a list of persons or organizations to be boycotted or punished.
* Black is associated with sophistication and elegance. A “black tie” event is formal.
* A black belt in karate identifies an expert.
* A black flag in a car race is the signal for a driver to go to the pits.
* A blackguard is a scoundrel.
* The ancient Egyptians believed that black cats had divine powers.
* Black lung is a coal miner's disease caused by the frequent inhaling of coal dust.
* Blackmail is getting things by threat.
* Black market is illegal trade in goods or money.
* A black sheep is an outcast.
* “Blackwash” (as opposed to “whitewash”) is to uncover or bring out in the light.
* A blackout is a period of darkness from the loss of electricity, for protection against nighttime air raids, or, in the theater, to separate scenes in a play.
* When you “black out,” you temporarily lose consciousness.